Work National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS)

  • Stakeholder engagement
  • Customer interviews
  • Surveys
  • Information Architecture
  • Wireframe design
  • Prototype testing
  • Website interface design
  • Front-end development
  • Drupal 8 development
  • Hosting set-up & management

The NDIS, implemented and overseen by the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA), helps support a better life for countless Australians who are disadvantaged by a significant and permanent disability, as well as their carers and families.

Icon won a highly competitive tender, and secured the position and responsibility of overhauling the usability of the NDIS website and redeveloping it on Drupal – the world-leading, enterprise-level open source content management platform.



The NDIS offers a new approach for supporting the 4.3 million people in Australia with disabilities, centred around two core principles:

  • Giving people with disability more control and choice over their support and funding
  • Helping people with disability to achieve their goals through fair and necessary support.

To properly support the NDIA’s world-leading Scheme and the people who needed access to it, a new website was required. The best NDIS website would require we understand the unique requirements and opinions of a wide range of user types through interviews and guided review sessions.



It is a key requirement of Australian Government agencies that services and information they deliver be non-discriminatory and accessible. The Web Accessibility Initiative sets guidelines for how such websites should be built using techniques that aid users who have impaired vision, hearing and mobility. 

The NDIS website needed to meet WCAG 2 AA principals, so that all users would find it easy to locate the information and services they needed. It would require an improved search function, and for the site’s layout to have a ‘responsive design’ which could adapt based on screen size. 

Also required was a new content structure and clearer layout of information to help convey key NDIS information and processes.



The requirements for this project were extensive, and to fully understand them, you need to be able to empathise with the site’s users. For our user experience team, this required unpacking and understanding internally held information and meeting with NDIS participants, as well as the Scheme’s Partners and Providers on an Australia-wide tour. These sessions included the following:

User interviews with:

  • NDIS Participants to better understand the variations in experiences within the Scheme (for example the difference between new vs established users, understanding the Scheme, eligibility requirements, the application process and creating, using and reviewing a personalised plan)
  • Support Coordinators to understand how, when guiding and assisting participants, they communicate and use the website
  • Service Providers who, to promote their services, need to understand the Scheme.

Workshops and focus groups: 
These were necessary to understand common problems and pain points encountered with the previous website, and to get first impressions on the design of the site and content layers. 

Usability testing of prototypes:

  • Testing information architecture
  • Finding information and completing tasks
  • Observing user and usability behaviour 

Using prototype wireframes and a new site structure, we gathered, interpreted and tested insights gained during the sessions. 

We created a new design system to reliably express the NDIS brand – from something as small as a single icon, all the way up to an entire page. Our developers then got to building front-end, AA compliant code, deploying and configuring Drupal CMS and migrating content from the old site. Highlights of our solution include:

  • Drupal 8 development
  • Powerful, easy to use site editor
  • Card Sorting and Optimal Workshop TreeJack testing
  • AA website accessibility level
  • Optimised front-end code and graphics for fast page loading speed
  • Location search
  • Improved site search
  • Responsive layout that's optimised for mobile

The new NDIS website can be seen in action here